On Monday 8th February, we have a new moon in Aquarius, the sign of the maverick, the visionary, the freedom lover, the inventor. If there’s one sign that hates limitations of all kinds and has perfected the art of leaping out of, or getting rid of the box altogether, it’s Aquarius. When the sun and moon are bopping along together in this sign, we’re all infused with some of this free spirit energy and are able to rise above our normal daily lives, get some perspective and re-envision them with new vigour and vitality.
However, there often seem to be a few issues with those wonderful new visions we have for our lives. Even though they look and sound really magnificent, they often seem to come to nought, as we sabotage them before they can start to manifest. Have you ever wondered why we shoot ourselves in the feet like that? Perhaps one reason is that in order to start the new, very often we have to end something that isn’t working, confront the unpleasant, or eject ourselves out of a comfort zone and enter into a place of uncertainty. Whenever we set new intentions, we’re inviting change of some kind and that in itself can be terrifying.
And so… as those (usually subconscious) fears hammer away underneath the surface, our visions for a better, fuller, more expanded life come grinding to a halt… and we keep doing the same old things in the same old way, almost by rote. The same old, same old song is our comfort zone and, even though its often anything but comfortable, its familiar… better the devil you know and all that. Although there’s nothing wrong with comfort per say, comfort zones can become prisons in their own right. We stick with things we know, lest we upset the apple cart, but in the process, we stop growing and become stagnant.
When you think about it, us humans spend an awful lot of time, energy and money surrounding ourselves with things and situations that make our lives easier and more comfortable, which is fine! But isn’t it interesting that we can’t wait to escape those very things and situations to go on our next holiday?
The vast majority of people I interact with, love to travel, or at least, that’s what I see every time I look at the vision boards we create, which are always plastered with pictures of far-away places. I had a client the other day who said she was suffering from “far away” sickness, which I can relate to completely!
Let’s unpack that for a few moments. Why do we so love to explore and adventure?
For me, it’s about that sense of newness and excitement I feel, when I wake up in a brand new place. The familiar comforts are gone, so I need to stretch myself … to find breakfast, make my way across a city or a new landscape, speak to strangers who I normally wouldn’t engage with, eat different foods, work out strange currencies, maybe negotiate with people who don’t speak my language and then fall into strange bed, exhausted, but happy… heart and mind expanded… excited about the next day’s adventures. Sometimes these experiences aren’t comfortable at all, but they enliven me like nothing else! The interesting this is that melancholies, limitations, doubts, fears and even aches and pains often seem to magically disappear…only to return when I’m back to the same old/same old,
When we push the limits they move – and this new moon is suggesting that we do just that. With it being in a tricky relationship with it’s ruler Uranus, as well as with fiery, impatient Mars, things in our comfort zones are likely to get a wee bit prickly. If you’re feeling irritated, nervous, anxious, aggravated or even more angry than normal, it’s probably because in at least one area of your life, you’re feeling stuck or limited. In that one place ,you might realise that you’re repeating things ad-nauseum or slipping into the same old behaviours, which are really starting to wear you down. As they say, insanity means doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. A word of caution, around the new moon, the intensity in our relationships will be turned up a few notches, so it can be very easy to project our issues onto significant others, … let’s all take a few deep breaths before we lash out at our nearest and dearest.
How best to diffuse this energy? By infusing some “new” into our daily lives, so we don’t feel like we’re existing from Friday to Friday. How about pretending that you’ve just arrived in your city or home town for the first time. What if you were to see it through the eyes of somebody who had travelled half way across the world to experience it? Where would you go? How about a new beach river, restaurant, park or art exhibition that you’ve never been to? What about eating some local food or engaging with people outside of your culture? Most of us do exactly this when people visit us from other parts of the world, so why don’t we do it for ourselves?
Take some time this month to reflect on the area/s of your life where you might feel stuck, limited or just too damned comfortable. And then take some bold steps to stride out of those comfort zones. You might want to start small – take a different route to work, change your hairstyle, buy something to wear that sets you apart from the rest, try a new recipe, start a conversation with a stranger and then move on to bigger things. The good news is that each and every time we do something new, we literally start to form new neural pathways in our brains, which get stronger and stronger each time we practice. Eventually, if we work on stretching ourselves, we won’t be afraid of anything! Imagine that!
It reminds me of a young chap I met a few years ago who described how he had always been afraid of approaching girls, because they might reject him. When he realised that he was holding himself back, he decided to escape his comfort zone and go and talk to one. After the first time, it got easier and easier. And here’s the kicker – he told me that he realised that even if they rejected him, by confronting his fear, he had expanded, so it didn’t actually matter what the outcome was at the end of the day. Artists, sportspeople and business people of all kinds experience this all the time, as they need to constantly try new things and stretch their limits in order to stay in the game.
I’m running two workshops on Finding the Magic – Escaping your comfort zones – one in February and one in March. See below in the body of the newsletter or email me for details. In this one day workshop, we’ll playfully explore this theme through group-work, visualisation, journalling and, of course, art. By doing some gentle yoga for the soul, we will streeetch ourselves from our Comfort Zones into our Magic Zones.
Let’s follow the Magic!